This discussion contains spoilers for 5 Days a Stranger.
Possession would seem an apt metaphor for gaming given the relationship between the player and the protagonist of a game. I often use the phrase “inhabiting the main character” to imply something like this idea and to distinguish between the way that games differ from other narratives in the way that they relate their audience to the characters in more traditional stories. The player takes control of the character, imposing his will on that character and ostensibly on the story to be told because the player will seemingly now be complicit in shaping the world. A little possession goes a long way in a video game world.
Revisiting the award winning, indie adventure game, 5 Days a Stanger, is initially interesting in this regard, the central plotline of the game focuses on possession. In this case, the classic mystery chestnut of an isolated space occupied by a few characters that keep getting knocked off one by one is complicated when possession becomes the instrument of the murderer, a ghost haunting the house.
The title of the game implies this possession. The game’s protagonist, Trilby, does spend “5 days as a stranger”, since he is “not entirely himself”. Thinking about this from the perspective of the player-character in video games is similarly suggestive. Video game protagonists, like Trilby, are never entirely themselves, as they are always “possessed” by the player.